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Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks

A random assortment of collectibles through the decades

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Today’s Friday, which means it’s time to pick several cars on AutoHunter to highlight for your reading enjoyment. No particular theme here except that they each have something that has piqued my interest. Do any of them pique yours? Let’s hope you’re entertained!

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1939 Mercury
Nineteen thirty-nine marked the first model year for Ford’s new medium-priced brand. Featuring a family resemblance to Ford, Lincoln Zephyr and senior Lincolns, the Mercury utilized a flathead V8 with more cubes than the Ford, better trim and interior appointments, and a longer wheelbase.

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

The similar 1940 used regulation sealed-beam headlights, but I’ve always fancied the way the earlier ones looked with their lantern-like teardrop lenses. This one is a two-door coupe — sportier than your usual sedan — that also features Offenhauser aluminum heads and intake, dual Stromberg 97 carburetors, modern 12-volt electrical system and electronic ignition. Sign me up!

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

1969 Dodge Super Bee
Truth be told, I much prefer the Coronet R/T for the taillights, but none are currently on AutoHunter, so why not this Super Bee? The front styling is the same, and they both have that slightly mean look without the ugliness that came the following year (admission: I like the 1970s too). Though I never was a fan of the standard power-bulge hood — the Ramcharger hood is cooler — “Y2” Yellow is a hue that I’ve always been partial to even though many seem to feel otherwise.

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

This Super Bee is a Coupe, which means it has a B-pillar and pop-out rear side window. This is more in keeping with the econo-muscle car formula a la Plymouth Road Runner. Look inside and you’ll find that formula continues with the bench seat with column-shifted 727 TorqueFlite harnessing the standard 335-horsepower 383 Magnum. While I wasn’t alive in 1969, I’d bet this is a typical example of the many Super Bees that were prowling the street back in the day.

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

2005 Chevrolet SSR
This is one of those vehicles where Chevrolet introduced a show car that was so popular, General Motors found a way to produce it … except the production version was so underwhelming that enthusiasts were left disappointed. And then, when Chevrolet finally made things right, the model was discontinued. The famous example of this is the Fiero, but it was the same for the SSR.

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

When the SSR hit the street in 2003-04, it used the 5.3-liter Vortec 5300 with 300 horsepower, and that was a let-down despite the stellar styling that only GM could do. For 2005-06, the 6.0-liter LS2 was used, which also added another 90 horsepower. This was the engine that Chevrolet should have used from the beginning, plus it was available with a six-speed TREMEC (though this red SSR features the automatic). Strong retro GM styling, classic small-block horsepower and top-down driving make this one an attractive future collectible that pretty much was a collectible when it was built.

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

1979 Lincoln Continental Mark V
My dad bought a leftover Mark IV when I was a kid, so I remember its successor when new. For some reason, I preferred the IV and I still do, but the V has its fans. I think a reason for my preference was the goofy separate reflectors on the trunklid that were not integrated with the taillights. I still don’t think it’s a look that I find complementary to a luxury car.

chevrolet, Diego’s Friday AutoHunter Picks, ClassicCars.com Journal

Nonetheless, this Mark V checks a lot of boxes thanks to its color, interior, cast-aluminum turbine wheels and mileage. The color is called Wedgewood Blue which, according to the brochure, was available as part of a “luxury group” that including matching interior, six-way power seat for the passenger and gray cut-pile carpeting in the luggage compartment. Inside, blue velour perfectly dates the Lincoln as being a contemporary example of what an American luxury car was in 1979. I would have guessed the Mark V came with a 460 but, glancing at the brochure, it appears only engine available in 1979 was a 400 two-barrel with 159 horsepower. This was typical of the era, but there still is plenty to love.

Diego Rosenberg
Diego Rosenberg
Lead Writer Diego Rosenberg is a native of Wilmington, Delaware and Princeton, New Jersey, giving him plenty of exposure to the charms of Carlisle and Englishtown. Though his first love is Citroen, he fell for muscle cars after being seduced by 1950s finned flyers—in fact, he’s written two books on American muscle. But please don’t think there is a strong American bias because foreign weirdness is never far from his heart. With a penchant for underground music from the 1960-70s, Diego and his family reside in the Southwest.

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